There are so many nutrients you need for your body, and protein perhaps is the most important one of those nutrients. Protein helps to carry oxygen around your body via the hemoglobin, repair and maintain muscles, generate important enzymes and hormones, enhance performance in day-to-day activities, etc. Not only that, protein helps to curb hunger by boosting metabolism and leads to eating a fewer amount of calories during the day.
So, you can see how important protein is both for maintaining your health and helping you to keep yourself fit for day-to-day affairs.
If we talk about sources you can get your necessary protein from, there are many that include meat, fish, yogurt, eggs, milk, nuts, tofu, soy, lentils, beans, poultry, etc. But apart from classic protein-based foods, you can get your protein from dietary supplements too. And protein shake is one of those dietary supplements that can provide you with your necessary proteins. People drink protein shakes for various reasons such as muscle gain, injury recovery, weight loss, etc.
As protein shakes have become really important among people as a high-quality source of protein and other nutrients, especially among the ones that work out, you might want to ask the question, “how effective are these protein shakes?” If you wonder whether you will get your expected results from the protein shakes, you are not the only one to wonder that. Let’s dive a bit deeper into this matter.
What Exactly Are Protein Shakes?
Protein shakes are basically dietary supplements, and according to the FDA, dietary supplements are products that contain specific dietary ingredients such as amino acids, vitamins minerals, and herbs. And in the case of protein shakes, contain amino acids, which are also known as building blocks of proteins.
Dietary supplements usually come in many forms such as liquids, powders, capsules, etc. As the name suggests, protein shakes come in ready-to-drink liquid form, you can also find protein powders that can work all the same as a great protein supplement. These powdered protein supplements are manufactured from either plant-based or animal-based sources.
Anyway, these protein supplements help you to complete or enhance your diet.
Protein shakes might come in really handy when you can’t reach your daily protein needs through only food, and especially when you are working out and in need of more protein.
Working Out and Consuming Protein Shakes
There is a recommended daily allowance (RDA) of protein for everyone, and it is 0.36 grams per pound of body weight. And this rate is an estimated amount of a nutrient a person needs to avoid a deficiency.
The amount needed to optimize health or body composition isn’t specified by this. But this RDA rate for protein is really low for everyone, and this minimal rate isn’t good enough for supporting growth and muscle recovery.
Especially people that work out or go through strength training regularly, need protein worth double the rate of RDA, to support their growth and muscle recovery. And that is 0.72 grams per pound. In order to optimize the results, this amount of protein needs to be spread over three to four meals that are consumed every three to four hours.
But, you can also take protein shakes as a great option to fulfill the daily protein demand for yourself. And as you are working out regularly, your need for protein has doubled, so it can be really hard to get your needed protein from the usual food you eat regularly.
Yes, you can always change your food habit and diet system and include more protein-based foods to increase your protein intake to the needed amount, but that can be tough and you might have to go for much hassle to make sure of that.
But you can just easily get protein shakes and drink that on a regular basis to intake your needed amount of protein. Many people think that there is an ‘anabolic window’ of when you need to take your protein shakes.
And most people think the window is within 30 minutes after you finish your workout, as the muscles are then like a sponge for protein. But this is not true.
You can take protein shakes any time of the day, and the timing won’t affect your growth or muscle repairing at all. It also doesn’t matter if you take the protein shake before or after your workout, they will work nevertheless. You just need to make sure that you are fulfilling your daily requirements for protein intake.
Effectiveness of Protein Shakes
You must know that you can’t use protein shakes to directly replace your protein-based meals. It is best to use them between meals, especially around workouts.
Many people might think that drinking protein shakes along with having a high-protein diet can harm their health. But that’s not the case. Instead, it can improve your bone health, and reduce the risk of bone fractures.
Not just these, as mentioned earlier, protein shakes can boost your metabolism and help you to lose weight and lose belly fat. It can also help you have a controlled diet by increasing the feeling of fullness.
But most importantly, you can fulfill your protein demand by taking these supplements.
Conclusion: Final Words
Protein shakes can not be a replacement for ideal protein-based diets. It’s best if you can get your proteins from natural plant and animal-based foods, but that’s not always possible, and it can be really tough to maintain the necessary protein intake.
So, you can resort to protein shakes without having any doubts, as they can work to help you fulfill your regular protein requirements.
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